Ryan L. Fox
They say that winning cures all team ailments. Nobody is talking about whether or not to trade the quarterback, if the defense needs to be blown up and reconstructed, or whether or not to trade Player A for Player B or draft picks. Last Sunday, the Patriots went down to New Orleans to take on the Saints, trying to wash the stink off their Week 1 debacle against the Kansas City Chiefs at home. After 3+ hours, it was safe to say that the Patriots were back on track.
The Patriots got off to an explosive start during the first quarter, putting 20 points on the Saints. Pats QB Tom Brady threw for 3 touchdowns in the quarter, one to RB Rex Burkhead, one to TE Rob Gronkowski, and one to WR Chris Hogan. In the second quarter, after giving up a 5-yard touchdown pass from Saints QB Drew Brees to WR Brandon Coleman, the Pats responded back with a 6-play, 75-yard drive capped off with a 2-yard touchdown run by RB Mike Gillislee to make it 27-13 at that point.
By halftime, Brady had put up numbers that would seem like he was playing a video game (19-for-25, 294 yards and 3 TDs) as the Patriots were enjoying a comfortable 30-13 lead.
For the rest of the second half, it was pretty much try to run out the clock as much as possible. The Pats were limited to just 6 points but it didn’t matter as the defense, who gave up 42 points in Week 1, stymied the Saints offense.
When the final gun was sound, the Pats were victorious by the final score of 36-20.
Patriots Top Performers:
QB Tom Brady: 30-for-39, 447 yards, 3 TDs
RB Mike Gillislee: 18 carries for 69 yards, 1 TD
TE Rob Gronkowski: 6 catches for 116 yards, 1 TD
RB James White: 2 carries for 11 yards, 8 catches for 85 yards
WR Chris Hogan: 5 catches for 78 yards, 1 TD
S Patrick Chung: 8 tackles (7 solo), 1 pass defended
DE Deatrich Wise Jr.: 2 tackles, 1.0 sack
Going into the game, the buzz with TE Rob Gronkowski was whether or not he lost a step. Given his track record of physical play and injury history, one could make that assumption. However against the Saints, all that talk flew right out the window. Gronk posted a 6 catch, 116 yard game and had a touchdown from a 53-yard pass from Brady.
Fox Fist Bump
The Fox Fist Bump goes to Tom Brady. He must heard me last week and responded in a big way to prove me as well as his doubters wrong. He finished the game 30-for-39, 447 yards, 3 TDs but looked really crisp throwing the ball. That ol’ Brady accuracy was back as he completed about 77% of his passes compared to last week where he completed a paltry 44% of his passes. Not too mention he was throwing the long ball, going 4-for-5 for 102 yards and 1 TD on throwing passes 20 yards or more.
No meatballs this week. Kind of hard to give one out when the team gets a big win like this.
Cause for Concern?
Again, RB Dion Lewis was pretty much a no-show in this game like in Week 1 against the Chiefs. He tallied just 4 carries for 14 yards (13 yards coming off a run in the third quarter) and caught just one pass for 11 yards. This is the second game in a row where Lewis had 5 touches or less on offense. Is there a chance Lewis’ time in New England is coming to a close? Will he be dealt before the Week 10 deadline?
Play of the Game
Gronk is back!
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